The question “What do you think about the new immigration rules in Korea?” was posted on eflgeek.com recently. I submitted my vote and saw the results of the 209 who have voted so far. Of course this isn’t the most official or necessarily the perfect reflection of the 17,000 plus teachers in Korea on an E-2 visa, but I’d say it probably isn’t a bad swag.
The possible answers were:
- In Korea and will wait and see (57 – 27%)
- In Korea and will leave after current contract (40 – 19%)
- In Korea and on an F visa and have no worries (37 – 18%)
- In Korea and will stay (33 – 16%)
- Ouside Korea and still coming (20 – 10%)
- Outside Korea and no longer considering coming to Korea (12 – 6%)
- Outside Korea and never wanted to come (3 – 1%)
- Who cares (7 -3%)
So, you can see the majority of who responded are in Korea. The answers I felt were grouped into 3 buckets: 1) don’t want to work in Korea anymore or never did, 2) will work in Korea despite the regulations, but need to figure out what’s going on and 3) indifferent, confused and “who cares”
In the first bucket, I think you can add the 2nd response above plus the 6th response and the 7th. If you total them, you get about 26% of the people not really excited about the new regulations and it has or will negatively affect their decision continuing to work here.
In the second bucket, I think you can total up the 3rd answer, the 4th and the 5th. If you group them all together, you get about 44% of the respondents who are still positive about staying here. They’ll figure things out or are just attracted to the idea of working here moving forward.
The last bucket is one that I think the immigration department needs to worry about. The highest number of responses were or are confused about the new rules. I have to admit I’m still not crystal clear on how easy it will be, how long it will take and if people will readily adopt this over time. If close to 30% of the people out there are not sure, I’m a little concerned. I’m happy that about 44% of the people out there are still positive about being here & can figure out what to do despite the regulations. However, I don’t want to be working with just 44% of the pool that I’m currently working with — the pool right now isn’t even that large at times & so having it reduce down to to less than half of the numbers we had in the past is quite worrisome. I’m crossing my fingers.